It’s a golden ticket, but you have to earn it. For the past two years, the Araca Project, an initiative launched by the Araca Group, the Broadway production company behind shows like Wicked, A View from the Bridge, and Rock of Ages, has invited students and young alumni from selected universities to present their work for consideration.
Winners advance to a two-week Producing Intensive, where they participate in workshops that school them on general management, publicity, press, marketing, and technical direction. This crash course culminates in the fall when each selected show receives a two-week run at The American Theatre for Actors in New York City.
This was the first year that Northwestern University School of Communication joined in the competition—and they clawed their way to the top, Wildcat style. Of the two Northwestern acts to present material, both earned places in the program (a total of six were chosen). They were:
All of Our Feelings at Once, a comedy troupe comprised of five School of Communication alumni: Robert Dowling (C10), Rebecca Loeser (C10), Alison Lynch (C10), Britta Rowings (C10), and Jesse Thurston (C11); and The Memory Tax, a production conceived by Chad Eschman (GC13).
All Our Feelings at Once promises to be a dynamic theatrical experience. “Committed to over-sharing by any means possible,” the ensemble members said, “we meld forms as varied as sketch, songs, storytelling, interactive games, circus, visual art, and good, old-fashioned handstand contests.”
The Memory Tax, which was written by Eschman, is a more straight-up drama. Set in post-apocalyptic America, where memories have become a taxable commodity, the story follows a young couple as they struggle to start a new life together in the face of a hopeless, crumbling world. “So, you know,” Eschman joked, “your typical ’90s RomCom.”
Participation in next year’s Araca Project is open to graduates of the classes of 2004-2014. For more information, contact School of Communication Office of External Programs, Internships, and Career Services (EPICS) Director Heather Trulock at firstname.lastname@example.org.